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“Do not stay here!”

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Asylum Cairns Backpacker Hostel
Ranked #46 of 85 Specialty Lodging in Cairns
Leeds, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Do not stay here!”
Reviewed May 2, 2014 via mobile

Me and my friend stayed for 5 nights while I had family visiting in the area. It is by far the worst hostel we have stayed in in 7 months of travelling! The place is a dump, its unclean and the rooms are like cells. We asked to move rooms, as one of the workers, who stayed in our room smelled so bad I couldn't sleep. To which the owner seemed annoyed by despite this meaning we would be paying more money as they could only fit us in to a smaller room. After this the staff were rude and unwelcoming to us. The kitchen did seem clean however, far cleanwr than either of the rooms we slept in, but as mentioned below was closed early on the hostels organised night out (which we didn't take part in). All in all for not much more money there are much better, cleaner places to stay. AVOID THIS PLACE!

Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank Rach9087
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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133 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
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English first
Australian Capital Territory, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed May 2, 2014

On arrival the hostel looked ok but when we got shown to are rooms it was a different story. This room was like a prison cell and smelled so bad that we only ever went in to sleep and even then the smell was that bad it was impossible to sleep. Most of the staff was very rude and the locals that are always sat outside drinking are just weird and creepy with the girls.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Sally2313
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Cairns hotels

1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed March 30, 2014

Very rude stuff ever, not the backpackers who work there. Who are the owners asian couple and their son just so rude and all their think is about money. There are too many backpacker hostels around just try to avoid this one ! Too many old guys who lives there and if you are couple or coming the places with someone you meet. they just start sexual jokes about ur girl friend and you. Owners dont care as long as they are getting paid. Too many bedbugs and rooms are so dirty, if you want to change to sheets you have to paid for it. Pool is full of dirt, wash machines and dryers doesnt work properly but at least they dont wash the sheets in their washer. Only one just good thing about there which is people i meet there

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ozzy c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 29, 2014 via mobile

Have stayed in loads of the chain hostels in Oz (YHA/Base/Nomads etc) and they are all designed to extract money from you at every avenue (e.g. overpriced bar with no BYO, charging for extras etc). Very little atmosphere as a result. This place felt like home immediately, everyone hangs out together etc. Could do with a lick of paint or whatever but who cares about the colour palette when the craic is mighty! Good work lads, keep 'er lit.

Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Kevin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brisbane
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2014

Stayed here last week with my boyfriend. pretty average place but we didnt expect a palace considering we got a private room and only paid 150 each (extremely cheap). Room was basic, bit like a cell...had comfy double bed, desk and chair. aircon was awesome and cold (definate plus seeing as it was average of 30 degrees every day). bathrooms were clean, didnt use the kitchen cos we went out every night but it seemed alright to look at. Staff were very friendly, very impressed they remembered our names and greeted us every time we came though reception. wifi was cheap and worked. If you're gana stay here dont expect a palace and you'll have a good time :)

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Beckina631
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2014

This is a really good, friendly hostel. They provide really good discount for good quality food at one of the local pubs, you can have a free meal every night if you like pasta! They provide great nights out and are really friendly guys at reception. They like a good night out too so watch out for them. Me and my partner shared a double room, well worth the extra if you can afford it.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank anonymous1601
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reading, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2014

I stayed at Asylum for 3 nights with my boyfriend in June, in the last hostel of many on a 4 month trip. It was the worst place either of us have ever stayed.

When we arrived, the staff informed us about a meal and night out organised for guests which included ‘free’ meal, ‘free’ t-shirt and gift, ‘free’ entry to a bar (except you pay $15 so obviously none of it is free) and internet for a week. If you don’t pay the $15, you have to pay for the internet per day which was very expensive. I don’t object to charging for internet, it's just I didn't want this all-inclusive 'package'. We were pushed to buy it several times and signs advertise it everywhere around the hostel. It sort of became a joke for us from day one.

But really the worst thing about this organised meal/night out was the whole place closed as soon as it started (at 7pm), including the kitchen and lounge/computer area. So we were left with no option but to go out if we didn’t just want to sit in our dorm all night without hot drinks/food or anything to do. It felt a bit like a regime, if you didn’t take part in it, you were punished. This is not what anyone expects from a hostel. It’s great to have activities for your guests, but if you don’t fancy the party, it should be ok to do your own thing! It's so ironic, because they advertise this hostel as being so friendly and making sure everyone is made to feel welcome - well, we felt the exact opposite. If you didn't go on the night out, you were made to feel like an outcast, with nowhere to sit and talk to the other people staying who also chose not to go out. It's just not in the spirit of having a good time, which is what they try to make you believe is the selling point of their hostel.

The following day, a sign appeared on the kitchen door saying ‘kitchen will be closed for cleaning from 7pm tonight’ and we were told this is because people don’t their dishes so the staff have to assign a time to clean it (7pm seems like the worst time of day to me – when most people cook their dinner). Luckily, we arrived back to the hostel at 6pm in time to see this sign which must have appeared a few hours earlier, so we had time to quickly make dinner and eat it before shut down again. In my opinion the kitchen was not that dirty, it was one feature of this hostel that was actually ok and reasonably clean. That was baffling.

It was pretty disappointing when you’ve paid to use basic facilities that for half the time you stay there were unavailable. They really need to get some more staff or just organise the ones they have better. Although they appeared friendly and polite to everyone, I got the impression they were all quite inexperienced and immature. Especially given the passive aggressive signs you see everywhere, telling people to pay their rent else they will get kicked out, or telling you to do your dishes because they don’t have a cleaner. That particular sign made it seem like guests need to consider the needs of the people running the hostel - when frankly they shouldn't have to care if the staff have to do cleaning. I don’t mind a polite sign encouraging people to consider other guests staying, but this just seemed really unprofessional/lame. It didn't seem like anyone was managing it.

Unfortunately like a lot of Aussie hostels Asylum is overrun with 18-30s on the 1 year working visa so a lot of people there are residents and not guests, living there whilst finding a job or working. It’s more like staying in a massive shared house than a hostel. If you’re there for that then it might be ok, but as guests staying a few days we just felt really out of place.

On one of the nights we stayed the guy on the bunk right below me had rampant sex with a girl who was staying in another room. This happened twice in one night. I was obviously pretty disturbed by the experience and crept in to share my boyfriend’s top bunk, opposite mine, not that that was any better hearing it from 5 ft away instead of it being right below me. It was awful, everyone (4 of us in the room) lying in our beds pretending it wasn’t happening right next to us. He left the next day thank god. I know this kind of thing happening is just unfortunate and can't be helped, but it’s the culture the hostel breeds with people staying there long-term and are obviously pretty desperate for a good time. Needless to say, I was SO happy to leave when the time came.

Finally, I must add that the state of the dorms and bathrooms was awful. It looked like it hadn’t been updated for 20 years, or properly cleaned in quite some time. In the dorms the other residents’ belongings were strewn all over the floor, it stank of damp and I dread to think what was harbouring in the old mattresses. Parts of the bathrooms were out of use because they were crumbling and some of the showers didn’t work or were cold. I would not recommend staying here at all.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank paperlily3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Asylum Cairns Backpacker Hostel

Property: Asylum Cairns Backpacker Hostel
Address: 149 Grafton St, Cairns, Queensland 4870, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Cairns Region > Cairns
Hotel Style:
Ranked #46 of 85 Specialty Lodging in Cairns
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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